The 27-year-old defendant’s Tesla Model S car ignored a red signal and then crashed into a Honda Civic whose two passengers were killed.
As early as August, the U.S. NHTSA launched a formal investigation into more than 765,000 Teslaes about Autopilot self-driving mode. This continues to cause great outrage (in relation to its actual capabilities) due to its name and advertising, as well as consumer abuse.
For the first time, however, a Tesla owner has been charged with causing a fatal accident in his electric car in Autopilot mode.
The 27-year-old Kevin George Aziz’s Riad Tesla Model S vehicle in Autopilot mode ignored a red light on December 29, 2019, and as it passed, it crashed into a Honda Civic whose two passengers, Gilberto Alcazar Lopez and Maria Guadalupe Nieves-Lopez, died.
The lawsuit was filed in October 2021, but has only just been made public. This is the first case in which a driver has been charged with using a more widely available, semi-automatic driving assistance system.
According to court documents, Tesla suddenly accelerated to an unsafe, uncontrollable speed and then the system did not brake when needed. The families of the victims also sued the driver and Tesla. The trial will take place in 2023, with a preliminary hearing of the accused as early as next month.